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The Concept of Death

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The Concept of Death

To begin, it is necessary to pause for a moment and reflect on one's own attitude in relation to death and dying. Undoubtedly, we are programmed to accept the 'passing' of others as natural. Yet, even then, when death 'threatens' us personally, or anyone for whom we hold great affection, the emotional component comes into play and the objective 'death' becomes a very real and intense experience.

This presentation is intended to address the concept of death on three separate, yet connecting levels.

First of all, the inevitability of death, although intellectually known, meets with resistance and constant denial. Discussion will begin there.

Secondly, 'types' of denial and resistance in relation to typical thoughts and actions by the dying and the 'survivor, will be addressed.

Thirdly, 'planning', both the need for and methods of, will be the natural progression. The intent in this place, will be to incorporate benefits to both Self, and others.

In summation, the object is to present an expanded awareness that offers new opportunities for addressing one's life and death with reason, dignity, compassion and a personal power that belies a seemingly 'helpless' position.

Naturally, we resist death. We literally live to live. Stories abound to confirm our will and supernatural striving to overcome dying. Often, in fact, we create a desire to live that prods our unconscious mind to develop thoughts and strategies that stretch any previous intelligence, strength, tenacity and healing power ever before experienced or imagined by us.

Furthermore, don't we get excited whenever we hear of, or personally observe miraculous remissions, returns from the brink of death, supernatural strengths and heroisms that challenge the human mind? Such experiences retold, awaken in most a sense that death can be circumvented, foiled or at the least, postponed by our willingness and determination to live, despite so called insurmountable odds.

All this, despite the reality, clear and simple - despite the date or circumstance, there is no other way out of this world. Death is conferred upon us as powerfully and unarguably, as life.

Why then, do the majority persist in avoiding its inevitability and refuse to confront, during life, the end?

It seems that resistance is commonplace, particularly in the Western Hemisphere and most especially North America. For the most part we resist talking about it, generally refuse to plan for it, and quite

regularly avoid any conversations on the topic that refer to the burial process. It is as if by not confronting and discussing it we can somehow avoid the experience.

As parents, there is a powerful tendency to avoid the subject of a child's death. At the least, parents live in the juxtaposition of chronically fearing the death of their children, while denying to that same child that they, the parent will ever leave their child.

Nonetheless, death forces that move. Age, time, convenience is not an issue. Yet, children seldom share these discussions, even when they approach the parents by asking serious questions.

In aging too, the resistance to acknowledging death is still common, although there is a greater willingness on the part of the aged to discuss it. But it is difficult to find anyone with whom to have the discussion. Perhaps



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